The exciting conclusion to last night’s post about Ryan and Steve Scalise forcing a floor vote on the dopey “abolish ICE” legislation being pushed by lefties.
"We know Speaker Ryan is not serious about passing our 'Establishing a Humane Immigration Enforcement System Act,' so members of Congress, advocacy groups, and impacted communities will not engage in this political stunt."
Story coming soon. pic.twitter.com/4xgpBAMsGr
— Ella Nilsen (@ella_nilsen) July 12, 2018
In other words, the bill was a stunt meant to virtue-signal to the base about the left’s hostility to immigration enforcement. They got ahead of themselves in their rush to pander and Republicans tried to make them pay. How outrageous that the GOP would try to divide the Democratic Party by pushing this … Democratic bill.
Why they drafted it in the first place, I have no idea. They had to know Republicans might seize on it and force a vote, gaining mileage from the results when centrist Dems pissed off the base by voting no and left-wing Dems pissed off swing voters by voting yes. Progressives would have been better off treating abolishing ICE as something aspirational, to be taken up if and only if the House is back in Democratic hands.
I hate to break it to Pocan and the rest but a floor vote right now with Ryan at the helm may be as close as he ever gets to putting his colleagues on record about his idea. If you think Republican leaders are chilly about abolishing ICE, wait until Speaker Pelosi takes charge and starts gearing up for 2020, knowing that it’ll help Democrats in the Rust Belt if they can at least pretend for two years that they’re not in favor of open borders. The “abolish ICE” act is going away for awhile, perhaps never to return. If Pocan wants back in this conversation, he should get cracking on a more politically palatable “reform ICE” act instead.
In lieu of an exit question, make sure you’ve read Ed’s rundown of the latest polling on immigration, particularly in battleground states. Hoo boy. Expect the well calibrated political weathervane known as Kirsten Gillibrand, who was out early among 2020 contenders in favor of abolishing ICE, to start scrambling away from it at any moment.